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Man Goes Blind Due to Simple Mistake; Experts Warn of Irreversible Damage

It’s widely known that sleeping with contact lenses can lead to eye damage.

Tragically, Chad Groeschen made a critical error while using “Night and Day” contacts, resulting in permanent vision loss.

Living in Cincinnati, Chad decided to keep his lenses on overnight for several consecutive nights, unaware of the risks. Suddenly, he began experiencing intense pain.

“Halfway through the day, my eyes started itching, and I thought it might be allergies, so I removed the lenses. The next morning, vision in my left eye began to blur,” he recounted.

“The contacts I used were marketed for ‘continuous wear,’ and I believed I could leave them in for up to 30 days,” Chad explained to USA Today, mentioning he removed them about once a week. “I thought minimizing contact with my eyes would be safer.”

What Chad didn’t realize was that despite being labeled for extended wear, the lenses still posed a significant infection risk, which he unfortunately contracted.

Upon consulting a specialist, Chad was diagnosed with a corneal ulcer infected with Pseudomonas bacteria, likely due to his contact lenses. Doctors explained that the lenses acted as a breeding ground, harboring bacteria that ultimately attacked his eye.

To restore sight to his left eye, Chad required a corneal transplant.
“Good vision is crucial for overall well-being and independence at all ages, so it’s essential not to compromise on proper contact lens wear and care,” emphasized CDC Medical Epidemiologist Jennifer Cope, M.D., M.P.H. “Many wearers lack clarity on how to properly handle and care for contact lenses.”

Statistics indicate improper handling and wearing of contact lenses significantly increase the risk of eye infections, affecting one in 500 people annually, potentially leading to severe vision loss and blindness.

Chad is not alone in sharing his story to raise awareness.
Another young person, 22-year-old Mike Krumholz, faced potential permanent blindness after a 40-minute nap with daily disposable contacts still in his eyes. After waking up, he showered and removed the lenses before going back to sleep. The following morning, he woke up with an itchy, “gunky” eye that was sensitive to light.

Tragically, he contracted a rare parasite known as Acanthamoeba keratitis, which can cause blindness.
“There’s no pain imaginable worse than this. Even the strongest medicines are ineffective. And the worst part is, I don’t know if I’ll ever regain vision in my eye at just 21 years old,” Krumholz shared. “I haven’t been able to go outside for over 30 days, and I’ve had to put up hurricane shutters to shield myself from light.”

Following parasite treatment expected to last months, Krumholz may undergo a corneal transplant to remove the infected part of his eye.

“I know I’ll never see fully again, but I don’t know how much vision I’ll recover,” he lamented.
To prevent eye infections, here are some important tips:

– Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water and dry them well before touching contact lenses.
– Remove contacts before sleeping, showering, or swimming.
– Rub and rinse contacts with disinfecting solution each time they are removed.
– Clean and dry the contact lens case with a clean tissue and store it upside down with caps off after each use.
– Replace contact lens cases at least every three months.
– Avoid adding fresh solution to old solution in the lens case.
– Carry a spare pair of glasses in case contacts need to be removed.
– Always avoid sleeping with contact lenses on.

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